Sunday, August 14, 2005
Please feel free to distribute.
To: AMBROSE LANE, Interim Executive Director, Pacifica Network
From: RIVA ENTEEN, Member, KPFA Local Station Board (LSB)
Last week, Confidential highlighted the efforts by you and Pacifica management to open a “line-of-credit” to Wells Fargo or the Bank of America. This proposal, which you claim the right to implement on your own, without any approval by the Pacifica National Board (PNB), has raised considerable alarm among Pacifica listeners and staff. Many find it eerily reminiscent of the effort, during the reign of former board chair Mary Frances Berry, to initiate a “quiet marketing scenario of discreet presentation to logical and qualified buyers.” I have not seen any response from you in the ensuing week concerning the questions raised in Confidential #13.
However, I have heard from a number of listeners who have expressed alarm at another aspect of your activities with the Pacifica Network. Specifically, questions have been raised about your repeatedly offering a forum on your WPFW-Pacifica show for Lyndon LaRouche. LaRouche has been described by Chip Berlet, of the well-respected PublicEye research group, as a:
“fascist demagogue… [who] combines populist antielitism with attacks on leftists, environmentalists, feminists, gay men and lesbians, and organized labor… [and who] built an international network for spying and propaganda, with links to the upper levels of government, business, and organized crime.”
(See below for more on LaRouche.)
I have reviewed two extensive interviews you did with LaRouche, one on October 1, 2004, and the other on November 12, 2004. Your interviews were, to say the least, sycophantic. You did not provide the listening audience with any background on LaRouche’s political history. You began your October interview by saying that you brought LaRouche on your show to “educate our listeners.” You asked nothing but softball questions, and seemed quite enamored of his rhetoric. You provided no counterpoint to his politics, even when he described his “relationship with President [Ronald] Reagan, when I proposed to his people that we adopt a policy of strategic defense” — the policy that became the multi-billion-dollar pork-barrel nuclear warfare Star Wars scheme — or when he made such strange statements as claiming that the “British organized the French Revolution.”
What on earth are you thinking, Ambrose?
We all know that the Pacifica network is currently being assaulted from all directions by the reactionaries running this country, and that the network is simultaneously being torn apart by internal turf wars that those same reactionary forces are eager to fan. This is not the time for Pacifica’s leaders to be encumbered with strange political alliances that call into question Pacifica’s commitment to progressive politics.
I want to make a public call for you to explain why you use Pacifica’s precious airwaves to provide a forum for reactionary forces like Lyndon LaRouche.
Ambrose, you have taken on a grave responsibility as the Interim Executive Director of Pacifica. Please give Pacifica’s listeners and staff the courtesy of a serious reply to this very serious concern.
Member, KPFA Local Station Board (LSB)
For more information on Lyndon LaRouche, see:
RIGHT-WING POPULISM IN AMERICA: TOO CLOSE FOR COMFORT
by Chip Berlet and Matthew N. Lyons
Guilford Press, 2000
NCLC street assault [Photo left, Daily World]
NCLC breaks up a meeting at Columbia University [Photo right, Columbia Spectator]
Temple University students,
victims of an assault by LaRouche’s NCLC